How and why did you start CoworkIn?
I have been running coworking spaces since last 5 years. I took over India’s first coworking space “Moonlighting” in November 2011 and that’s when I entered into this space. Moonlighting was one of its kind India’s first coworking as well as co-living space. After sheltering many entrepreneurs and fostering their startups, I decided to primarily focus on coworking and community around it. In October 2013, we launched CoworkIn with a vision to set up affordable coworking and community events spaces across the globe. CoworkIn focusses on bringing workplaces closer to your home in order to ensure you do not have to travel too much and are able to focus on your work and get access to a community of professionals, freelancers, social workers, entrepreneurs, students, and pets.
What is Coworkin today?
CoworkIn is India’s largest growing chain of coworking spaces. We have 3 active properties situated in prime locations of New Delhi with 7 new properties being set up in the Delhi NCR Region. Besides that, CoworkIn is establishing large spaces in growing towns of Northern India as well as launching in Southern India with its first space in Bengaluru.
What are the biggest challenges Coworkin has faced and is facing nowadays?
Coworking is an upcoming trend, however, very few people understand it. While people have started adopted coworking trends, they still do not know expectations and their role in a shared economy. Making Indian’s live in a shared economy with limited resources and services is tricky at times.
How do you see the current coworking scene in India?
Coworking has grown big time in India. When we started our journey in 2011, we were pretty much the only space in Delhi and there were probably a couple of spaces across India. Now Delhi NCR is expected to have about 50+ spaces while India has about 200+ spaces. Coworking will expand with time as more and more people are moving towards shared resources and affordable solutions.
Where do you see the coworking scene in India over 5 years time?
Coworking will be the office option for SME’s, professionals, startups, and students. With affordable solutions and access to an open and diverse community, coworking is bound to grow and be the first office option for anyone. Besides that, I also feel coworking will get specialised and we would see vertical specific / industry specific spaces in India.
What can coworking bring to support the development of the Startup Nation in India?
For any nation to startup, it is important to have a culture of innovations and collaborations. Without innovations, nothing can get started and without having the right set of people to understand those innovations, nothing can succeed. The core philosophy behind coworking is to create and collaborate and hence there isn’t anything more important than coworking to support a nation like India to startup. Each of our space has almost 150-200 members with over 50 startups at any given point of time. Till date, we have supported over 500 startups from our space all alone.
Will the future of work in India be different or similar to what we are seeing elsewhere
Well, it’s difficult to predict the future, however working culture is changing drastically. People have realised the importance of a space and as the world grows, spaces shrink and hence there is a dying need for optimised, well designed and effective shared spaces.
As one of the organizers of the first Coworking India conference, you will bring together the leaders of the Indian coworking movement. Why is important to join the event?
As India moves into a Startup Nation where we see our youth starting up with new ideas, it is the duty of each of the ecosystem players including all coworking space owners, incubators, startup accelerators, ecosystem builders and government to come together and understand about all opportunities and work together towards strengthening this growing ecosystem. At Coworking India conference, we are looking forward to hosting all of these key ecosystem players to ensure we work towards a common goal which is the development of this nation while solving problems and ensuring the happiness of its citizens.